RIT’s Saunders College of Business has broken ground on a multimillion-dollar expansion and renovation project at Max Lowenthal Hall. The project, expected to be completed in early 2024, will nearly double the building’s footprint and provide advanced teaching and learning spaces, opportunities for innovative research, state-of-the-art event and collaboration spaces, and renovations to existing spaces.
This project would not be possible without transformative gifts from Saunders College alumni and friends, including serial entrepreneur, philanthropist and college namesake E. Philip Saunders; alumni Chance Wright ’18 (advertising photo), ’19 (MBA) and Susan Holliday ’85 (MBA); the late Klaus Gueldenpfennig ’74 MS (electrical engineering), ’77 (MBA); Brigitte Gueldenpfennig ’81 (MBA); and Dinah Gueldenpfennig Weisberg ’97 MS (software development and management), ’03 (EMBA), who collectively committed nearly $12 million to the project. Additionally, Saunders College was awarded a grant from New York State as part of the Higher Education Capital Matching Grant Program.
The new building will have student team rooms, applied research and case analysis labs, an event space and lounge, state-of-the-art auditorium, a cafeteria, an executive MBA and executive education suite, a wine room in support of the hospitality program and outdoor spaces with wide views of the campus.
Existing classrooms will also be renovated in support of innovative and student-centered pedagogy.
“All of us at Saunders are excited about this transformation,” said Dean Jacqueline Mozrall. “This expansion and renovation will allow for interdisciplinary collaborations between our RIT students and faculty, enhanced applied research and experiential education opportunities, and expanded community engagement and outreach – all of which allow us to drive intergenerational creativity and innovation future of business leaders. “
Originally designed by Robert Macon, Max Lowenthal Hall was built in the late 1970s. The new design by LaBella Associates, with LeChase Construction as the contractor, seeks to honor the architectural language of the existing building, reinterpreting the materials to present them in a more modern way.